Goffman and Stigma Blog # 2

Goffman’s view on stigma in which it is a negative action, attribute or reputation pertains to how the majority of people in capitalistic society operate today.  

When people first meet each other today, stereotypes and any visual aid predetermines how people perceive an individual.  For instance, a person dressed in rags and isn’t hygienic is likely to be judged as a homeless person.  While these portrayals are due to a lack of first hand information, these stereotypes or stigmas placed against other people sometimes may help people in day to day interactions.  Many times however, stigmas are wrongfully given and are a cause of society’s ignorance to different cultures and norms.  Such stigmas include the term terrorist associated with middle eastern ethnics due to the events on 9/11.  

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One response to “Goffman and Stigma Blog # 2

  1. I agree that stigmas can definitely be a negative thing because we tend to generalize one reoccurring attribute to individuals of the same “type”. And while I do believe this is a cause of society’s ignorance, I can’t completely say this is 100% negative. In a way, I think of it as a defense mechanism. Something that may in fact, be “natural” of us as human beings to act/perceive things in such a way that would protect us. Stereotypes and stigmas depend on the “nature” of the society.

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